I would like to thank Fresh and Green Academy for an amazing life experience in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. My husband, a school teacher and myself a Chiropractor, set out the summer of 2011 to climb Mt Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. While in Africa, I wanted to utilize my skills and passion for chiropractic and volunteer for those who do not have the luxury choosing chiropractic. After meeting Dr Salem Aklilu, the first chiropractor in Ethiopia, at a Parker seminar we were put in contact with Dr Greg Rubinstein of New York who has brought chiropractic to a primary school in Addis Ababa.
Our experience there was terrific. Muday, a wonderful Ethiopian woman who started Fresh and Green, came and picked us up at the airport and treated us like royalty. We stayed at a hotel and were picked up daily to head to the school to adjust the children. My first day at the school, I adjusted the kids and some of the moms. Spencer, my husband, spent some time in the classrooms teaching the kids the basic principles of chiropractic and health.
I was amazed by what Muday has done. She has 111 children at the school all of which come from families that can not afford for them to go to school. They are fed a healthy well balanced diet of 3 meals a day, they
get clothes, showers, teeth brushed and naps for the young ones. They learn English and all the core subjects, they even get music and art. All of this is done through donations, she unfortunately has to turn families away daily as she can not help anymore at this time. Muday’s vision is big, she has many plans for fresh and green and the children in that community.
A lot of the moms are involved with the school as well. Many coming from the streets were they have had to beg or prostitute themselves in order to feed their children. Muday has the moms cook the meals, do laundry, make crafts and learn how to support their families.
The children were so excited for their adjustments, lining up and looking through the window with anticipation. I loved that Dr Gregg had been at the school 3 times in the past few years and I was continuing on his work. The more the people in the community see the Chiropractor as someone that can help their body heal themselves, the healthier they will become. The children are so fortunate to be receiving
great nutrition, clothing, chiropractic and education. These children could be the ones who help Ethiopia become a better country to live in. As BJ Palmer once said, “You never know how something you may say think or do may affect the lives of millions tomorrow”.
My experience at Fresh and Green Academy will always be remembered. Many of my patients donated spare change in their pockets before I left and we ended up collecting enough to help Muday buy uniforms for the children in September. We are also sponsoring a child to continue her schooling. I would recommend for anyone to volunteer at Fresh and Green Academy, you won’t regret it.
Dr. Christie MacDonald